The Inspector General of Police, Martin Okoth Ochola has cautioned police officers to stay away from acts of violence on citizens.
His cautions come just after the terrible joint security crackdown on street vendors and city dwellers who were accused of defying president Museveni’s orders.
On Thursday, a great deal of vendors were involved in running battles with stick wielding policemen backed by the Local Defence Unit. Eventually, majority were flogged as the security laboured to decongest the city which had been earmarked as a vulnerable point for the spread of the Corona virus pandemic. Social media users encountered footage and photos showing police officers and LDU troops physically assaulting food and fruit vendors operating from downtown Kampala.
The IGP’s message was delivered by AIGP, Asuman Mugenyi, the Director in charge of police operations. He rephrased the IGP’s reiteration that inhumane behaviour was unacceptable in such a worrying moment. He proposed mitigation and one on one approach as a way of making people understand what the situation is like. “The president’s message is clear, every officer who will defy it will be held responsible for their negligence,” Asuman told the press. He also asked officers to desist from following rephrased social media directives but rather source from those conveyed through official police channels.
The controversial presidential directive was misinterpreted by security forces who indiscriminately launched violence on exempted traders like the food vendors and hawkers. Their violent actions have since drew massive criticism from members of the public. Relatedly, today, March 28 President Museveni us expected to deliver another address after the cases hit 23 last night.